Snaps- The Redskins’ offense was on the field for 71 snaps against the Giants. Jay Gruden used 16 of the 23 offensive players on the roster during the game.
The 7 who did not play included 3 inactives (Jordan Reed, Chase Roullier and Trent Williams), 2 who only saw time on special teams (Brian Quick and LeShun Daniels) and 2 that did not take a snap of any kind (Colt McCoy and Demetrius Rhaney).
Opening Drive Points- Kirk Cousins and company failed to score points on their opening drive for just the third time this season. As of right now, they are still tied with the Rams for the most opening-possession scores in the NFL.
Penalties- The Redskins, who came into Thursday night as the second least penalized team in the league, finished the game with 10 total penalties, 8 accepted penalties and 55 penalty yards.
Eight of the total penalties and six of the accepted infractions were committed by the offense. The only other time the offense was flagged more this season was in the Week 3 blowout of the Raiders.
3rd Down- The Skins’ third-down woes continued in this game. The team moved the sticks on just 4 of their 15 third downs. This was the sixth straight week the Redskins have only converted on four or five third downs and that they’ve posted a success rate below 36% on these plays.
This is not a new trend, either. If you look back at the beginning of the season, you’ll find the offense moved the chains 5 or fewer times and on fewer than 40% or less of their third downs in three of the team’s first four games.
Washington’s season high in third-down conversions is 7 (twice) and they have not been successful on more than 50% of their third downs once in a game all season.
Red Zone- The offense went 2-for-4 inside of the Giants’ 20-yard line on Thursday. The Redskins have scored touchdowns on 50% or more of their trips to the red area in eight consecutive games and they have hit that mark a total of nine times this season.
In 2016, the Washington offense converted on half or more of their red-zone trips eight times total.
Rushing- Burgundy and Gold runners combined for 122 yards and 5 first downs on the team’s 31 rushing attempts in the game. This was the third time this season and the first game since Week 4 the team has gained 100 yards on the ground in back-to-back contests.
If you exclude Cousins’ two kneel downs at the end of the game, the offense lost yardage or failed to gain any yards on six rushes (21%), but gained 5 or more yards on twelve runs (41%). That also would’ve brought their average up from 3.9 to 4.1 yards per carry.
Mo’ Starters, Mo’ Problems- The Redskins’ offense has had to deal with a multitude of injuries this season, and as a result the team has been forced to start many more players on that side of the ball than it would like to.
Believe it or not, and you probably will, but the Redskins have used 24 starters on offense. That’s more than double the number of players that are on the field for a team at any one time. This means they have basically had to use two entirely different sets of starters.
Quarterback (Kirk Cousins) and right tackle (Morgan Moses) are the only positions they have not needed more than one starter at. Check out the insane number of players they’ve had to start at a few other positions: 5 wide receivers, 4 tight ends, 3 left tackles, 3 centers and 3 running backs.
At this point, you probably won’t be shocked when I tell you that no other team has started more players on offense than the Redskins this season (24 players).
Kirk Cousins (Traditional Stats)- Kirk Cousins completed 19 of his 31 passes for 242 yards, a season-low tying 10 first downs, 2 touchdowns and an interception. Every one of those numbers, with the exception of the 2 touchdowns, were well below his season averages.
His completion percentage (61.3%), YPA average (7.81) and passer rating (93.8) figures were also subpar by his 2017 standards.
Cousins was flagged for a delay of game infraction twice. The last and only other time he did this was in the 2014 game against the Titans, in which he was benched for Colt McCoy.
Kirk Cousins (Sacks)- Cousins was sacked a whopping 6 times in the game, which ties the career high set against the Seahawks just under three weeks ago. He has already been sacked a career-most 31 times this season and is on pace to finish the year with 45 sacks. That is about 20 more than his previous career high (26). His 7.6% sack rate is easily the worst percentage of his career (4.6% in 2015).
But according to Cousins, he is okay with taking more sacks in order to make fewer mistakes and make more big plays. His strategy seems to be working.
KC is throwing picks on a career-low 1.6% of his passes. His old season-low is 2.0% and he is the owner of a career interception rate of 2.5%. Cousins is on pace to finish the year with just 9 interceptions, which would be his lowest total as a full-time starter.
He is also throwing touchdowns at a higher clip than his career average (5.1% compared to 4.7%) and gaining more yards per attempt than he has throughout his career (8.1 YPA compared to 7.8 YPA).
Kirk Cousins (Advanced Stats)- One of the main reasons Cousins took so many sacks was he held onto the ball for a season-high average of 2.97 seconds per dropback.
His raw QBR of 32.7 and adjusted QBR of 23.7 are both his third worst marks of the season. Surprisingly, the Redskins won all three of those games (Rams, Seahawks and Giants).
Kirk Cousins (Records)- Cpt. Kirk went over 15,000 career passing yards in Thursday’s game. He joins Joe Theismann, Sonny Jurgensen, Sammy Baugh and Mark Rypien as the only QBs in franchise history with over 15,000 yards. Cousins (15,151 yards) is on pace to easily pass Rypien (15,928) for 4th on this list by the end of the season.
Cousins also hit the 3,000-yard mark on the year, which makes him the first signal caller in franchise history to pass for over 3,000 yards in three consecutive seasons. With his next touchdown toss, he will become the first Redskin to ever throw 20 or more touchdown passes in three consecutive seasons.
He is on pace to become just the third player to ever pass for 25 touchdowns, 4,100 yards and throw 15 or fewer interceptions in three straight years. The only other players that have accomplished that feat are Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.
Kirk Cousins (Game-Winning Drives)- Cousins led the Redskins’ offense on yet another game-winning drive, his fourth of the year. This means he has a GWD in four of the team’s five wins, or 80% of their victories this season. That is the highest percentage for any quarterback on a team that has won more than one game this year.
Kirk Cousins now leads the entire NFL in game-winning drives this season (4 GWDs) and his 11 GWDs since he took over as a starter in 2015 ranks 3rd in the league only behind Derek Carr (12) and Matthew Stafford (14).
Kirk Cousins (I am Iron Man)- I keep hearing about how Cousins has started in 43 straight games, which is the second longest streak by a quarterback in franchise history. That’s great, but why do we never hear about how Cousins stacks up against his modern-day peers? I don’t know, so I’ll just tell you.
Cousins is just one of seven QBs who has started in each of his team’s last 42 games. The others are: Matt Ryan, Russell Wilson, Philip Rivers, Blake Bortles, Eli Manning and Matthew Stafford. Stafford and Cousins are the only quarterbacks on this list that have not missed a single offensive snap for their teams since the start of the 2016 season.
So we’ve seen a few of similarities here between Cousins and the NFL’s highest paid player, Matthew Stafford. Hmmm, I wonder if this trend will continue in the offseason when Kirk Cousins’ contract is up.
Josh Doctson- Josh Doctson played on all 71 of the Redskins’ offensive snaps. That is extremely rare for a wide receiver, at least it has been for the Redskins. Doctson is the only Washington wideout who has been in on a 100% of the plays in a game since snap data became available in 2012.
In fact, there have only been two other non-QB skill position players for the Redskins who have done this for the Redskins since 2012, and they were tight ends (Fred Davis 4 times and Logan Paulsen 3 times).
Doctson snagged 2 of his 4 targets for 28 yards and caught the game-winning touchdown with just over four minutes left in the game. The TD was his fourth of the season, which ties Chris Thompson (R.I.P.) for the most on the team.
It was his third red-zone score of the year. J-Doc is tied for 25th in the league in red-zone touchdowns and 20th in red-zone touchdown scoring percentage (33%).
He also drew a crucial 37-yard defensive pass interference with a minute left in the first half. That play moved the offense into the red zone and set the team up for a game-tying field goal.
Doctson did, however, make a few mistakes on the night. He was flagged for a false start on a drive the team ended up having to punt on. Then, on the Redskins’ very next drive, he went out of bounds a yard short of the line to gain on third down. They wound up going for it on the ensuing fourth down, only to see Doctson fail to haul in what would have been a chain-moving catch on the play.
Jamison Crowder- Jamison Crowder was easily the best offensive player on the field this past Thursday. He led the game with 10 targets, 7 receptions, 141 receiving yards, 91 air yards, 68 yards after the catch and 6 receiving first downs. He scored his first touchdown of the year, as well.
Much of his yardage in the game came courtesy of big plays. Crowder had the team’s four longest plays of the night and three of the four longest plays in the game. He caught a career-high 3 passes which gained 25 or more yards.
His 141 yards were 28 receiving yards more than the Giants had as a team (113 yards). The receiving yardage total was 3 yards more than the next five highest individual totals combined in the game (138 yards).
Not only did Crowder’s 141 yards dwarf the receiving production of every other player in the game, that mark represented a new career high for the third-year slot receiver out of Duke. This breaks the personal record he set less than a month ago against the Cowboys (123 yards).
This was the second most receiving yards recorded by a Redskins player in a game this year (150 yards by Chris Thompson) and the most receiving yards by a Washington wideout since DeSean Jackson put up 153 yards on the Bills in Week 15 of the 2015 campaign.
Crowder’s 6 first downs in the game were also a career high, and he was responsible for moving the chains or scoring on all four of the team’s third-down conversions.
Perhaps, the most amazing part about this performance was he did it while fighting through an injury which limited him to just 37 plays (52% snap share). Imagine what he could’ve done with a full complement of snaps.
Little Man on Fire- Crowder has been on an incredible hot streak, as of late. In his last four games, he put up a combined 27 receptions for 412 yards and 17 first downs on 42 targets, which represents the best four-game stretch of his career in every one of those statistics.
Since Week 8, Jamison Crowder ranks top-5 in the NFL in targets, receptions and receiving yards. The only three players who have bested him in two or more of those categories since Week 8 are Keenan Allen, Adam Thielen and DeAndre Hopkins.
Ryan Grant- Ryan Grant started opposite of Josh Doctson and saw his third highest totals of the season in snaps (49) and snap percentage (69%).
However, he ended up matching season lows in targets (2) and receptions (1), while setting new 2017 lows in receiving yards (3) and first downs (0).
Grant really could have salvaged his day if he had been able to haul in his first target of the night, a 3rd-and-9 throw into the end zone with 25 seconds left in the first half. The Redskins settled with a game-tying field goal on the next play.
Maurice Harris- Mo Harris had something of a bounce-back game on Thursday. After not receiving a target over the course of his 9 snaps against the Saints in Week 11, he made 2 catches for 12 yards and a first down on 2 targets and 12 snaps against the Giants.
His first reception gained just enough yards to move the chains on a touchdown-drive, but he came up a yard shy of the sticks on his third-down catch in the 4th quarter. The latter play set up the Redskins with the 4-and-1 situation that they bungled in epic fashion.
Harris also operated as a return man on both kickoffs and punts.
Brian Quick- Quick, who had been battling concussion symptoms, was active for the first time since the Week 9 contest against the Seahawks, which was by far his best game of the season.
You would think he might’ve earned some more playing time with the offense after that performance, but alas he worked exclusively as a special teamer for the third time in his seven active games this year.
Vernon Davis- Vernon Davis set new season-highs in snaps (65) and snap percentage (91.5%) and ran 30 routes against the Giants. That all makes sense. What has everyone scratching their heads is the fact that Davis was only targeted once and did not catch a single pass against a Giants’ defense which has been historically bad against tight ends.
VD failed to haul in his only target in Week 1 against the Eagles, so this isn’t a season-low for him, but it was certainly his worst game as a Redskin when Jordan Reed was inactive.
His previous lows in a game without Reed was 2 targets, 1 reception, 13 yards and 1 first down in a 42-21 blowout of the Bears in Week 16 last year. He was averaging 6.1 targets, 4.4 receptions, 58 yards and 0.25 touchdowns in these games coming into Thursday.
Who knows what really happened here. Perhaps, Davis’ mind was preoccupied with his favorite Thanksgiving dish.
Niles Paul- Niles Paul made his fifth start of the year. This was the fifth game in 2017 that he played between 45% and 51% of the snaps in.
Paul‘s 5 targets against the Giants exceeded his 2017 total coming into the game (4), and he caught a season-high 3 passes in the game. In fact these were his highest target and catch totals since Week 11 of 2014, when he also had 5 targets and 3 receptions.
Unfortunately, like in the 2014 contest (17 yards), he wasn’t effective with his additional opportunities in the passing game. He only gained 16 yards and did not pick up any first downs. And on top of that, Paul dropped a pass and committed a false start penalty.
Jordan Reed- Reed was inactive for the fourth consecutive week and for the fifth time this year.
Fortunately for the Redskins, they are learning to win without his services. Coming into the year the team had a winning percentage of .446 with him (20-25-1) compared to a rate of a .278 without him (5-13).
This season, Washington has a winning record without Jordan Reed (3-2) and a losing record in games he does play in (2-4). This could be the first season since 2013, his rookie year, that the team has had a winning record without him active on game day.
Reed, who is in his fifth year with the team, has only started in three more games with the Redskins than Vernon Davis has (28 to 25). Davis hasn’t even been with the team for a full two seasons yet.
Jeremy Sprinkle- Jeremy Sprinkle played on just over a quarter of the snaps. He is averaging 20 snaps per game and a 29% snap share with Reed out of the lineup this month.
Sprinkle scored his first touchdown against the Saints in Week 11, but was not targeted once on Thursday night.
He technically gave up a sack to Jason Pierre-Paul, but it’s hard to fault him much here for a couple of reasons: A) why is he blocking JPP by himself in the first place, and B) Cousins held onto the ball for nearly six seconds on the play.
A Giant Missed Opportunity- The Giants are one of the few teams as bad against opposing tight ends as the Redskins are. Coming into the game New York ranked in the bottom 5 in targets, receptions, receiving yards and touchdowns allowed to the position. Yet, somehow the Redskins found a way to avoid exploiting this weakness.
Washington tight ends combined for 3 receptions for 16 yards, 0 first downs and 0 touchdowns on 6 targets against in Thursday night’s game. The reception and touchdown totals are tied for the worst marks by tight ends against the G-Men this year (each tied with 1 other team), and the 16 receiving yards and 0 first downs are new season worsts by a tight end corps facing the Giants.
Samaje Perine (Playing Time)- In his third start of the year, Perine set new season highs in snaps (50) and snap percentage (70%). This was his second game as the undisputed lead back on the team and the second time he has led all Redskins RBs in snaps. He might have played even more had he not suffered a minor finger injury during the game.
Samaje Perine (Rushing)- The rookie runner out of Oklahoma toted the rock 24 times for 100 yards, a career-best 5 first downs and a 4.2 YPC average. He forced 2 missed tackles, gained 56 yards after contact and averaged 2.3 yards after being touched.
He did lose yardage on one run (4%) and failed to gain any yards on four rushes (17%); but he took nine carries for 5 or more yards (38%) and three runs for 10 or more yards (13%).
Many have said Perine is the type of back who gets better as the game goes on. That narrative certainly looked to have some legs to it on Thursday night. He only gained 3 yards on his 5 first-half runs (0.6 YPC), but followed that up with 19 rushes for 97 yards in the second half (5.11 YPC).
His 82.4 PFF grade was the second highest grade by an offensive player in the game (Crowder 84.5).
Samaje Perine (Receiving)- Perine also had a nice day through the air. He set new career highs in targets (4), receptions (3) and receiving yards (30).
Two of his receptions went for first downs, which combined with his rushing chain movers, gave him a game-high 7 total first downs. That is the same number of first downs the Giants had as team.
His 130 yards from scrimmage in the game was a new career high.
Samaje Perine (Records)- This was Perine’s second straight game with 100-plus rushing yards. The last time a Redskins’ running back accomplished that feat was in Weeks 9 and 10 of the 2013 season, when Alfred Morris gained a combined 260 rushing yards against the Chargers and Vikings.
He became just the fifth Redskin since at least 1950 to rush for 100 yards in multiple games as a 22-year-old or younger. We can go another step further with that statistic, too.
Samaje Perine recorded the second 100-yard game of his career at 22 years and 68 days old, which makes him the second youngest Redskins’ running back since at least 1950 to rush for 100 yards in multiple contests. Perine was just three days behind the great Larry Brown, who hit the century mark for the second time in his career at 22 years and 65 days old.
Byron Marshall- Byron Marshall played on a season-high 21 snaps for the offense.
The Redskins’ new third-down back caught 1 of his 2 targets for 12 yards and 0 first downs. The reception was his first of the year.
He couldn’t hang onto his second target, a high pass from Kirk Cousins; Janoris Jenkins intercepted the pass that Marshall had tipped into the air and returned it for a game-tying pick six.
Marshall rushed the ball for gains of 2, 8 and 11 yards and lost 3 yards on a fourth run. In all, he gained 18 yards on 4 attempts, which was good for a 4.5-yard average. That looks nice on paper, but it is inflated by his 11-yarder on a 3rd-and-27 rush. Only one of his four rushes gained the requisite yardage to be considered successful.
LeShun Daniels- Daniels only saw the field on special teams in what was his first career NFL game.
LeShun Daniels is a decent athlete who gained over 1,100 yards from scrimmage and scored 10 touchdowns in his senior season at Iowa. He went undrafted this past April and spent time with the Patriots and Chargers before joining the Redskins.
Offensive Line (Team)- The makeshift line gave up 6 sacks to a Giant’s team that still ranks bottom-12 in sacks and sack percentage after this game.
Six of the Giants’ seven QB hits came on the dropbacks Cousins was sacked on, which is something you could view in either a positive or negative light.
The O-line fared much better in the running game, as they set the Redskins up for their second straight 100-yard rushing game.
Ty Nsekhe- Nsekhe disappointed in his first start of the year. He was tasked with the difficult assignment of blocking Olivier Vernon, but that does not excuse his poor performance in this game.
He gave up 2 sacks to Vernon, committed 2 holdings penalties and was called for a false start (3 total penalties). Luckily, Nsekhe was able to save a little face, because two of those penalties were declined.
Arie Kouandijo- Kouandijo had not allowed a single pressure on his 57 passing-blocking snaps in 2017 and was particularity impressive in his lone start of the year (at Seattle).
Things didn’t go as well for him against the Giants. Kouandijo allowed a sack to Dalvin Tomlinson inside the Giants’ red zone on a drive the Redskins would have to settle for a field goal. On the offense’s very next drive, he committed a holding penalty and then gave up a sack to Devon Kennard on the very next play.
So, Kouandijo may have cost the team 4 points on one drive and he basically single-handedly stalled another drive. Two sacks and a holding penalty does not make for a good day at the office.
Tony Bergstrom- The Redskins’ third-string center made his first start for the team on Thursday night.
Bergstrom played all 71 snaps and was primarily responsible for giving up a 5-yard sack to Damon “Snacks” Harrison on a play from midfield. The Redskins would end up turning the ball over on downs two plays later.
His 41.3 PFF grade on the year is the fifth lowest rating among the 44 centers who the site has graded this season.
Brandon Scherff- Scherff had another very strong outing this week. He did not allow a sack and was instrumental in the team’s 100-yard rushing day.
When Morgan Moses went out for a few plays, Scherff was the only remaining starter left standing. That is a feeling Moses knows all too well.
Morgan Moses- Moses fought through multiple injuries in the game and only missed 4 snaps.
He gave up a 10-yard sack to JPP on an early fourth quarter third-down play.
Tyler Catalina- Tyler Catalina came in to spell an injured Morgan Moses at right tackle for 4 snaps.
In the past month alone Catalina has made two starts at guard, been waived by the Redskins, been re-signed by the team and played as a backup tackle.
Demetrius Rhaney- Rhaney was one of three active Redskins who did not play in any capacity.
The fourth-year vet was signed two days before the game. He was brought in to be used as an emergency center if Bergstrom suffered an injury.
Rhaney is a 2014 7th-round pick with just 1 start and 123 offensive snaps to his credit. He will almost certainly be let go when Chase Roullier is healthy enough to play again.
Chase Roullier- Per PFF Spencer Long allowed 5 pressures over the course of 223 pass-blocking snaps this season. That is exactly the same number of pressures Chase Roullier has given up in 2017, albeit on 42 less passing plays (181 passing-blocking snaps).
He’s been right there with Long as a run blocker, as well. He’s actually earned a better PFF grade (57.3) than Long has (52.1) in this regard.
Roullier missed the Giants game with a broken hand, but has a shot to return next week against the Cowboys.
Trent Williams- Trent Williams was inactive for the third time this year, which is a personal record for the 5-time Pro Bowler. Williams had never missed more than two games in a season due to injury prior to Thursday.
ALL OFFENSIVE SNAPS
*All statistics are courtesy of Air Yards, CSN Mid Atlantic, ESPN, Football Perspective, NFL.com, NFL Gamebooks, Player Profiler, Pro Football Focus, Pro Football Reference, Redskins.com, Sharp Football Stats, Team Rankings and The Washington Post*
Jamison Crowder’s contract is eligible to be extended in 2018. How much should the Redskins pay Crowder on his next deal?
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$2M to $4M APY
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